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Saturday 04 February |
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Saint of the Day: St. Ambrose Barlow

Monk murdered during the English Reformation

AMBROSE BARLOW

Sjukmidlands CC

Benedictine Monk and Martyr (1585-1641)

His life

+ Edward was the fourth son of Sir Alexander Barlow and Mary Bereton of Barlow Hall. Baptized as a Catholic shortly after his birth, he was, however, raised as a Protestant, conforming to English law. He returned to the Catholic Faith as an adult.

+ Educated at the College of St. Gregory in Douai, France, and the Royal College of St. Alban in Valladolid, Spain, Edward became a Benedictine monk in 1616, receiving the religious name “Ambrose.”

+ Dom Ambrose was ordained in 1617 and returned to England to minister in secret to Catholics in south Lancashire for 24 years. Unlike many priests serving in England at this time, he was very open about his ministry and was arrested several times.

+ On April 25, 1631, just after Easter Mass, he was arrested by an armed mob and was later charged with the crime of being a Catholic priest. He was hanged, drawn, and quartered on September 10, 1641.

+ Saint Ambrose Barlow was one of the “Forty Martyrs of England and Wales” canonized by Pope Saint Paul VI in 1970.

For prayer and reflection

Faced with the choice of remaining steadfast in their faith and of dying for it, or of saving their lives by denying that faith, without a moment’s hesitation and with a truly supernatural strength they stood for God and joyfully confronted martyrdom.”—Pope Saint Paul VI, Homily at the Canonization of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales

Spiritual bonus

On September 10 we also remember Saint Nemesion (or Nemesius) of Alexandria. Following his arrest for a suspected theft (of which he was proven innocent), it was discovered that he was a Christian. Having refused to deny his faith during the trial, he was scourged and executed around the year 250.

Prayer

O God, who were pleased to give light to your Church by adorning blessed Ambrose with the victory of martyrdom, graciously grant that, as he imitated the Lord’s Passion, so we may, by following in his footsteps, be worthy to attain eternal joys. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.

(from The Roman Missal: Common of Martyrs—For One Martyr)

Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.

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